Wednesday, February 22, 2006

This should really hurt! And for your own good...


Whitehouse -- Asceticists

I thought I'd have to listen to this more than once in order to comment, the newest Whitehouse. Let's get the sound out of the way... Alot more rhythmic indeed, only "Ruthless Babysitting" sounding like ersatz recent WH. And alot more hypnotic and original, particularily on the mournful doom-piece "Nzambi Ia Lufua". Some of these sounds seem remarkably guitar-like, but the rhythmic pulses add quite a distressingly mesmerizing and visceral kick-in-the-gut...

There's so much going on here at all levels: "Dans", "Language Recovery" and "Ruthless Babysitting" returning to the theme of depravity-as-art and as brilliantly-done as ever. Most of the tracks in this fashion seem to come from Philip Best, who had no hand in WH lyrics before as far as I know...

William Bennett's lyrical subjects are cleverly done in concurrance to his interests in Neuro-Linguistic Programming. But something theraputic or even subversive seems to be lurking even under this... Especially "Killing Hurts Give You The Secrets", managing to be inspired by the infamous Rwandan and Congoese massacres without this time even dropping the usual references. Instead the lyrics force you to think about how conflicts and civil wars happen when the people least expect it. As also happened in Yugoslavia and, I hear, may probably even happen to the complacent 'land-of-freedom' the United States in a few years... This track forces you to think that the mundane bourgeous comfortable life you live may not last. That the 'security' your empty Ken-doll president promises you could very well be a sham and leave you exposed to ugly, loveless harm.

And there is more here. The topic of how dormant inner-resentment may very-well be inflamed without whatever organisational or purely psychological securities may very well be in place. Or just about the human being -- that we're not automatrons or commodities after all...

What a empty life
Your miserable fucking life in general
That miserably fails to address
That Deep longingness inside of you
That deep painful void
It's why you need to find someone to hurt
It's time to take your own life
And examine it
Because might you might find yourself saying this is it?
This is all I have ever lived for
As you walk through life light
Because you're walking utterly empty
Just how empty and meaningless your actions have been
Go deep inside that nothingness you call yourself
And examine your own shoddy motives to realise
That you're wounding yourself more than you ever could
It's really fucking tragic to see that
Thrill-hurting yourself in such a matter
Since you obviously get thrills cheating
But in truth cheating yourself
Scammed out of a life.

Inside Inzane Studios is a new podcast series from John Olson of Wolf Eyes and Dead Machines.

The first installment being obscure X-tian folk and folk-rock oddities. In particular that Asceticists had me thinking of (and was dwelling in my mind before I heard it) was one hymn from my childhood memory "I Am the Resurrection and the Light" (included on the soundfile) , remembering how it used to fill my little heart with joy. But that joy went sour by my last year of college, realizing the darker side of Christianity and it's anti-spiritual, slate-grey dogmatism
and it's outright lying hypocrisy. How it's twisted into something contrary to its theoretical good intentions.

From something as hippy-peacenik as "I Am the Resurrection" to Siouxsie Sioux's "Premature Burial": "I'm not your sister or your brother!" Losing the childhood trust I had and then nihilistically pushing against it. Seeing it for the tacky suburbanite banality and idiocy it had now looked like to me...

That's what Asceticists have made me think of. Does it work? Maybe too early to tell...

But I hope it makes you have difficultly sleeping! 'Cos it should...